1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Harvest Ale - Southern Tier Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Harvest AleHarvest Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,349 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,349
Reviews: 557
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.44%
Wants: 41
Gots: 90 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  6.70% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: John on 10-19-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,349 | Reviews: 557 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jdavin
2.58/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I was thoroughly disappointed with this beer. I've been quite impressed with some of Southern Tier's other beers, so I was really looking forward to their harvest ale. The first surprise was that it didn't look anything like any other harvest ale I've had. It is super light in color - light yellow straw, almost pilsner color.

Southern Tier calls this an English-style ESB. But where is the malty character? I shudder to say it but this made me think Budweiser with a bunch more hops added. It is very light in body - I would guess the FG is around 1.008 or lower.

At the very least they need to do a better job of marketing / advertising this beer. Calling it a Harvest ale when it has hardly any caramel malt or body to it will confuse a lot of buyers. It's more like a light summer blonde ale.

The hop character is also a bit low for a harvest ale. The bitterness is pretty low, and while the aroma is good I'm not sold on the hop taste. It is too woody and piney when I would prefer citrus hops in a harvest ale.

I dumped the second half of the two 12ozers I've had so far (tasted on separate days to make sure my first judgment wasn't just a fluke). I hardly ever dump beer.

A - very light straw color, good clarity. Pilsner-like in appearance.

S - Aroma is woody hops.

T - Taste is overall low in complexity. Hops are earthy, woody. Mild to moderate bitterness.

M - Very low light body. A little undercarbonated I'd say, even for an English-style ESB.

D - drinkable, but not that fun to drink. Too low in body, makes me feel like I'm drinking water or Budweiser.

jdavin, Oct 20, 2009
Photo of chillwinston
2.63/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A: Dark golden color, no head retention.

S: Floral, bright hops but with a strong alcohol smell and not much else.

T: Very dry with resinous floral hops. Again, strong taste of alcohol and very one dimensional.

M: Light bodied. Oily. Low carbonation.

O: I guess I had something else in mind when I saw "Harvest Ale" written on the six pack. Reminded me of a run-of-the-mill IPA. Similar to Harpoon IPA. However, the strong alcohol bite turned me off. I like Southern Tier's other offering but I can not recommend this.

chillwinston, Nov 12, 2013
Photo of dasunder
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

dasunder, Dec 10, 2012
Photo of rypkr
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

rypkr, Sep 19, 2013
Photo of grniz3
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

grniz3, Oct 07, 2012
Photo of MonicaC
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

MonicaC, Nov 27, 2013
Photo of Ravenacht
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

Ravenacht, Oct 08, 2012
Photo of mrjez
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

mrjez, Jul 27, 2014
Photo of KingMe
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

KingMe, Sep 27, 2013
Photo of JayKay412
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

JayKay412, Sep 08, 2013
Photo of ripweblo
2.75/5  rDev -28.8%

ripweblo, Sep 06, 2012
Photo of dvmorrisncsu
2.76/5  rDev -28.5%

dvmorrisncsu, Monday at 10:44 PM
Photo of gezondheid
2.83/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A bit early for a harvest ale. Supposed fresh English hops. Not likely. Nice fall look and color. Nose is the first give away that something is missing first taste confirms. Metallic pineapple juice finish. A decent beer. But not a stand out in the harvest category.

gezondheid, Aug 14, 2011
Photo of schlimenhaumer
2.85/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle a bit different from the picture (which, from top to bottom, reads: Special Ale Harvest Seasonal) into a pint glass at low altitude.

A: Pours a clear copper color with a minimal foamy white head that dissipates rather quickly and leaves some spotty lacing.

S: Sweet malts with a citrus peel background. Very nice in this regard.

T: Starts off with some caramel malts, but then all the other flavors are overpowered by very bitter piney resins that stay on the tongue far too long. No balance whatsoever.

M: Medium-bodied with a slick mouthfeel and a bit of carbonation.

D: Not sure if Southern Tier changed the recipe on this, but the bottle I had was grossly unbalanced. They have plenty of better beers to choose from in my opinion.

schlimenhaumer, Oct 29, 2011
Photo of SerialHiker
2.95/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Appearance: Golden brown to medium copper, very little action on the inside…light tanned head formed, but quickly dissipated…(2.75/5)

Smell: Floral hops, bitter tones…grassy malts…smells nice, but sort of narrow in aroma…mild pine somewhere in there…(2.75/5)

Taste: Very malty, balanced and easy to drink…cereal, sweet, citrus and grassy flavors…floral hops balance out the malt beginning and actually linger longer than any other flavor…bitter aftertaste that does last…(3.25/5)

Mouthfeel: Bitter…little carbonation explosion in my mouth…kinda feels like a cheaper beer…a very flavored water (if that makes sense)…bitter aftertaste…(2/5)

Overall: This is a beer I would take to a fire on a cool evening and totally enjoy…the malt and hops balance each other very well creating a flavorful beer without being too robust and only for the microbrew lover…a good tasting, commercial beer…(3/5)

SerialHiker, Jan 10, 2013
Photo of woodchipper
3/5  rDev -22.3%

woodchipper, Oct 12, 2013
Photo of dankjohn
3/5  rDev -22.3%

dankjohn, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of Daddy_bone1
3/5  rDev -22.3%

Daddy_bone1, Oct 19, 2013
Photo of jerefreakinmiah
3/5  rDev -22.3%

jerefreakinmiah, Oct 12, 2013
Photo of fmccormi
3/5  rDev -22.3%

fmccormi, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of Brezzy24
3/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- pours a hazy bright copper color with a frothy white head

S- bright citrusy hops combined with a bit of citrus harvest and a bit of grassy woodsy smell

T- great balance of citrus/floral hops and bready sweet malt, a bit of caramel and sweet fruitiness, finishes somewhat dry with a bit of cracker crispness

M- medium body, low carbonation, slightly creamy finish

O- this one had some great balance and was very drinkable, just solid overall

Serving type: bottle

Brezzy24, Sep 22, 2013
Photo of jonathaniler
3/5  rDev -22.3%

jonathaniler, Apr 24, 2012
Photo of Matt_Rodgers
3/5  rDev -22.3%

Matt_Rodgers, Jun 07, 2013
Photo of JacobTC
3/5  rDev -22.3%

JacobTC, Aug 12, 2012
Harvest Ale from Southern Tier Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,349 ratings.